April 2019 Sector update from Disabled Persons Organisation Coalition (DPO)
Here is the April 2019 Sector update from Disabled Persons Organisation Coalition (DPO) as reported by Independent Living Board Member - Martine Abel-Williamson QSM.
- Minister Sepuloni – The DPO Coalition had another very positive meeting with the Minister. We are working well together on a new whole of Government approach for the Disability Action Plan. We are pleased that the Minister has confirmed that Accessibility will be a key focus in the plan including progressing Accessibility Legislation. This issue was championed by the DPO Coalition in the previous Disability Action Plan and by the Accessibility Alliance over the past year.
- Disability Action Plan – The DPO Coalition is making good progress working with the Office for Disability Issues on the next Disability Action Plan. This is a truly whole of Government approach and plan. Further focused workshops are coming up with Transport and with Health to progress these areas. In addition to the main priorities and actions, the DPO Coalition is requesting that all Government agencies identify comprehensive disability responsiveness actions so that these become business as usual for each agency. These plans will be a core part of the Government’s expectations of each agency and of each Chief Executive’s performance. The DPO Coalition will continue to co-govern the DAP with Senior Government officials, including escalation pathways to Chief Executives and Ministers.
- Health System Review – We met with the Health System Review and provided initial comments. A dedicated workshop is being arranged to further this discussion. The review produces its first report in August on its main themes and key questions. These will be progressed to a final report and recommendations in March 2020.
- Accessibility – Accessibility is a key theme in the Disability Action Plan. We met with Anne Hawker on progress implementing the Accessibility Charter. All Government agencies have signed up and are working on identifying gaps and what they need to do to fix them. Information access is first up, followed by employment, services and attitudes. Training materials are being developed with input from DPOs, and a complaints and feedback process is being set up. Delivery of the Accessibility Charter is part of Government expectations and Chief Executives will be assessed on their progress. A dashboard will be available on how each agency is doing. The next step is to engage Parliamentary Services, Local Government, District Health Boards and the independent Commissioners to encourage them to sign up to the Accessibility Charter.
- Disabled People Led Monitoring – Work is progressing very well with 24 monitors being trained this month, followed by over 60 interviews to inform the housing report. The DPO Coalition remains very impressed by the approach the Donald Beasley Institute has designed and by their overall professionalism.
- Ministry of Social Development – We met with Debbie Power the new Chief Executive to discuss working together to progress Disability Issues.
- Communications – We are looking for ways to improve our communication about DPO Coalition activity. If you have any suggestions, please let us know via firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Independent Living